Welcome to Pushover to Pioneer

WHAT PUSHES YOU?

Tell me if you identify with any of these statements:

  • You hate (or at least you don’t enjoy) confrontation.
  • You would rather keep the peace than cause a scene.
  • When you find out people don’t like you, you immediately want to know why.
  • When you walk into a room full of people, you immediately experience anxiety.
  • You put off making those difficult calls or having those difficult conversations.
  • When someone does you wrong, you struggle with forgiveness–or even plot revenge.
  • When someone gets unfairly promoted, you’re overcome with bitterness or resentment.

Maybe you wouldn’t describe yourself as a “pushover.”  Or maybe you are self-identifying, like me.  At least I use to be one.  By pushover, I mean someone too easily affected or pushed…by people, by fear or by circumstances.  While my days as a full-time pushover are in my past, there are days when I face unfair or uncomfortable circumstances that conjure up old feelings of anxiety and dread.  But after years of growth and experience, I no longer shrink in fear or avoid conflict as I used to.  Unpleasant situations are still unpleasant.  But when you know your purpose–or that you have one–you are able to face every circumstance, obstacle or critic with confidence and hope.  It is my goal to impart wisdom to you to give you strength in the difficulties so that you can overcome the pushover mentality.

Throughout my childhood, teen years and college years, most people thought of me as “quiet.”  When it came to competing in my sport or performing in my musical endeavors, I certainly was not shy.  But when it came to human interaction, you could have called me the poster child for awkwardness.  The social aspects of school made me miserable.  Parties were painful.  And having to speak in class was torture.  Standing up to make presentations in my public speaking class in college (in front of 12 classmates) made me physically ill.  Who would have EVER guessed what was in my future?  Miss America contestant, motivational speaker, trial lawyer and now sports agent.  How?  I didn’t magically grow a new personality.  I made a decision: to seek purpose and stop letting fear push me.  When I did that, my God-given personality could shine.  And that can be true for you, too.

A word of caution: as you move from a place of weakness to a place of strength, remember that (as with most things) extremes on both ends of the spectrum are bad.  Being an agreeable, likeable, empathetic and/or diplomatic person is not a terrible thing.  In fact, such traits are important; even empowering.  However, seeking to keep the peace by being a doormat is not ideal.  Confidence, Self-assurance and tenacity are absolutely desirable traits.  But confidence can cross the line into cockiness, entitlement and even narcissism.  So what are the keys to striking the right balance?  We will tackle each of these in “Pushover to Pioneer.”

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